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Noranda likely to sell downstream business

By Amanda Raymond

amanda.raymond@salisburypost.com

Norandal USA in Salisbury, a company of the Noranda Aluminum Holding Corp., is likely to begin the process of being sold as part of the corporation’s downstream flat-rolled business.

The corporation filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on Feb. 8. The filing was voluntary and will allow the corporation to undergo a restructuring process.

Noranda is an integrated producer of aluminum products and rolled aluminum coils, according to the corporation’s website.

As part of the restructuring process, the corporation’s downstream flat-rolled products business will likely be sold through a court-supervised process, according to a news release.

The Salisbury plant is part of the flat-rolled products business. The plant produces light-gauge sheet and foil products for the flexible packaging, HVAC and the food container markets. According to the corporation’s website, the facility has a production capacity of about 95 million pounds annually.

There are about 130 active employees at the Salisbury plant, according to John Parker, vice president of communication and investor relations.

The corporation also has downstream business plants in Tennessee and Arkansas.

“Our downstream flat-rolled products business is profitable, generates positive cash flow and continues to serve customers in the ordinary course,” Kip Smith, president and chief executive officer of the corporation, said in a news release.

The corporation’s upstream business, which provided raw materials to the downstream businesses, is not doing as well. Smith stated in the press release that “challenging market conditions … and the recent disruptions in our primary business operations” were the reasons for filing the bankruptcy.

Although the downstream business received some of its raw materials from the corporation’s upstream facilities, the new release said the downstream business still receives materials from other sources.

John Parker, vice president of communications and investor relations, said the company will be conducting the sale as quickly as possible.

“We don’t expect sale process to adversely effect the ongoing operations of the business or our ability to supply our customers with products,” he said.

An upstream facility in New Madrid, Missouri, will continue operations until March of this year. After that, the operations will stop but the corporation will keep the option to reopen the plant if conditions become favorable, the news release stated.

The news release also stated that another upstream facility in Gramercy, Louisiana, which received materials from the New Madrid plant, will continue production while figuring out how to operate without the New Madrid plant as a major source of demand.

Contact reporter Amanda Raymond at 704-797-4222.

 

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